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Neymar Accused of Fraud | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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Neymar in FC Barcelona, in 2013-2014

 Neymar in FC Barcelona, in 2013-2014

Neymar in FC Barcelona, in 2013-2014

Madrid – Reuters reported that FC Barcelona’s forward player Neymar has been ordered to appear in a Spanish court next February as one of the defendants in a fraud case brought by DIS, a Brazilian investment fund.

A judge in Madrid, acting on a request from the state prosecutor, told Neymar, his parents, former Barca president Sandro Rosell, incumbent Josep Maria Bartomeu, and two former Santos officials to present themselves on both Feb. 1 and 2.

“The judge … believes that the prosecutor’s requests are ‘relevant, necessary and balanced’ for them to require an examination of the facts,” the court said in a statement on Wednesday.

Moreover, Javier Faus, a former Barca vice president, was also called to appear as a witness.

The club has said it acted “fully within the law” and rejected all accusations included in the DIS suit.

The fund, which owned 40 percent of Neymar’s rights when he was at Santos, alleges it was paid far less than it was entitled to when the player agreed to join the Spanish and European champions in 2013.

The tax probe was launched after a club member questioned the figures given for the Neymar deal. Barca had started off by saying they paid 57.1 million euros but later admitted the cost was an approximate 100 million.

The complaint was the latest twist to a story that has also led to Barca, Rosell and Bartomeu facing trial for tax fraud; Bartomeu was a vice president under Rosell when Neymar was signed in a complex deal involving multiple contracts.

Bartomeu, Rosell resigned over the allegations, and the club has been accused of swindling the tax office of some 13 million euros ($14.1 million). All three denied having done anything wrong.

Prosecutors have asked for a prison sentence of two years and three months for Bartomeu and 7-1/2 years for Rosell, in addition to fines and payments of outstanding taxes adding up to over 60 million euros.